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Stratford makes a point at Pleasant Point

Stratford makes a point at Pleasant Point

World championships third placegetter Nathan Stratford had his third win in a row this season when he won the Pleasant Point Gymkhana Shears Open final in South Canterbury on Saturday (yesterday).

It was Stratford’s fourth win in the event, but his first there for eight years. Now in his 21st season of Open-class shearing, he won at Pleasant Point in 2001, 2008 and 2009, when he beat North Island shearing legend David Fagan, who won the title early in his last season of competition in 2014.

This time, Fagan’s son, Jack, fresh from his first Open-final win in New Zealand seven days earlier at the Wairarapa show, was the only shearer in the four-man, 18-sheep final to go under a minute a sheep. But he had to settle for third place overall, yielding to the better quality of both Stratford and fellow Southland veteran Darin Forde, while local Ant Frew was fourth.

There was a blast from the past in the Senior final which was won by Hamish Anderson, of Timaru, who had rarely figured on the competition scene since winning eight finals and reaching a Golden Shears final as an Intermediate shearer in 2001.

His lack of recent finals seemed to matter little as he beat form shearers Linton Palmer, winner of Great Raihania Shears Senior title in Hastings 15 days earlier, Luis Pincol, who was looking for a third win in a row this season, and Mitchell Murray, looking for his first Senior win after seven in the Intermediate grade last season.

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Cheviot shearer Liam Norrie, who won the 2016 Junior final on his way to becoming Shearing Sports New Zealand’s No 1 ranked Junior nationwide last season, scored his second Intermediate win, having opened the season with victory at Waimate. Saturday’s Junior final provided a first Junior win for Makaira Keene, of Timaru, who had been runner-up to Norrie in the Junior final last year.

The show attracted 40 entries across the classes, including 12 in the Open.
Results from the Pleasant Point Gymkhana Shears at Pleasant Point on Saturday November 4, 2017:

Open final (18 sheep): Nathan Stratford (Invercargill) 18min 5.56sec, 60pts, 1; Darin Forde (Tuatapere/Lornville) 18min 1.13sec, 61.78pts, 2; Jack Fagan (Te Kuiti) 17min 45.31sec, 63.32pts, 3; Ant Frew (Pleasant Point) 19min 39.16sec, 66.85pts, 4.
Open Plate (7 sheep): Brett Roberts (Mataura) 7min 34.91sec, 27.89pts, 1; Grant Smith (Rakaia) 7min 37sec, 32.14pts, 2; Ringakaha Paewai (Gore) 8min 8.03sec, 32.54pts, 3; Brook Todd (Dipton) 8min 0.78sec, 35.18pts, 4.
Senior final (8 sheep): Hamish Anderson (Timaru) 11min 48.06sec, 43.53pts, 1; Linton Palmer (Dipton) 11min 58.72sec, 44.31pts, 2; Luis Pincol (Chile/Geraldine) 12min 22.5sec, 45pts, 3; Mitchell Murray (Amberley) 12min 45.47sec, 46.02pts, 4.
Intermediate final (3 sheep): Liam Norrie (Cheviot) 5min 30.25sec, 24.18pts, 1; Sam Bryan (Darfield) 5min 18.6sec, 27.26pts, 2; Brandon Maguire Ratima (Winton) 5min 38.69sec, 33.6pts, 3; Jesse Barclay (Gore) 4min 34.09sec, 39.37pts, 4.
Junior final (2 sheep): Makaira Keene (Timaru) 6min 7.72sec, 29.39pts, 1; Henry Mayo (England) 6min 36.21sec, 29.81pts, 2; Darcy Tong (Taihape) 7min 2.35sec, 32.62pts, 3; Jonah Collins (-) 6min 23.37sec, 33.17pts, 4.

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